Presidential candidate Donald Trump says replacing former President Andrew Jackson with abolitionist Harriet Tubman on the $20 bill is “pure political correctness.”
The Republican frontrunner says Jackson shouldn’t be taken off of U.S. currency. Instead, he felt another currency should be found for Tubman, suggesting the much rarer $2 bill.
“Well, Andrew Jackson had a great history, and I think it’s very rough when you take someone off the bill,” Trump said on the “Today” show. “I think Harriet Tubman is fantastic. I would love to leave Andrew Jackson and see if we can come up with another denomination. Maybe we can do the $2 bill?”
Jackson, the seventh President of the United States, was a democratic populist who opposed the national banking system. He closed the Second National Bank when its charter expired, setting off “the most serious economic upheaval to face the United States until the Great Depression,” according to the Lehrman Institute.
Jackson’s fallen out of favor in recent years given his ownership of hundreds of slaves that worked the Hermitage plantation, which he acquired in 1804. He is also known for having signed the Indian Removal Act, which relocated many native tribes from the South to areas around Oklahoma.
Tubman, who Treasury Secretary Jack Lew said would replace Jackson on the front of the $20 bill, is best known for leading hundreds of slaves to freedom through the “underground railroad.” She was born into slavery and went on to lead some thirteen missions to free other slaves. Tubman is also known for working as a union spy during the Civil War and was active in the women’s suffrage movement.
Tubman will become the first African-American ever and the first woman in more than a century to appear on paper currency. Former Secretary of the Treasury and founder of the American financial system Andrew Hamilton will remain on the $10 bill despite past discussions of his replacement. The change is not expected to take effect until 2030, at the latest.